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MTA starting platform inspections


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MTA starting platform inspections

By Marlene Naanes

amNewYork Staff Writer

February 14, 2008



Willie Davis

The MTA subway platform for the Avenue M station

stop on the Q train suffers from deferred

maintenance. Edges of the platform have been

extended with wood boarding to lessen the gap

between the train; however much of it is worn

and rotting.[/float]New York City Transit will begin inspecting platform edges in all 468 subway stations Thursday, four days after learning a 14-year-old boy in Brooklyn fell onto the tracks when a wooden board gave away, officials announced Wednesday.


Teams of transit employees will immediately replace broken or missing wood and fiberglass rubbing boards, which are designed to prevent trains from hitting cement platforms. Transit officials, who did not say how long the system-wide inspection will last, will hand over findings to the MTA Inspector General's Office.


"Clearly it is an issue NYC Transit takes very seriously, as we do with any other safety-sensitive condition," officials said in a statement. "Conversely, customers are reminded that standing or walking along the platform edge – whether in perfect condition or not – is behavior we consistently warn against."


Transit President Howard Roberts launched the inspection after he saw a piece of a wooden rubbing board that broke underneath Brooklyn teen Avi Katz, sending him scrambling out of the path of an oncoming Q train at the Kings Highway station. An amNewYork cover story on Tuesday also found worn or rickety rubbing boards at nine other stations in Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx.


Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D- Borough Park), who brought the teen's story to light, launched his own investigation into platform conditions in his district. His office found rotting wood that cannot bear a person's weight and tripping hazards at the seven stations.


"Things don't happen this fast when it comes to the MTA in my 26 years of experience," Hikind said. "They schlep. They drag. They think. This is a very positive sign. "


It is unclear how many worn or wooden rubbing boards exist in the transit system. Transit employees inspect stations every other day and replace broken boards then or when a station is rehabbed and when platforms are made handicapped-accessible, a spokesman said.


Transit could change their inspections so crews focus on the condition of rubbing boards one day and another part of a station another time, rider advocates said.


" You might not be able to give them that level of detailed inspection every two days, but you may be able to once every week," said William Henderson, executive director of the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the MTA.


Photo Gallery: amny_logo.gif icon_offsite.png - February 15, 2008

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I was never one to look at the edge of the platform to see if the train is in sight.

I would look but not at the edge of the platform.


These people are pretty dimwitted, you never know who is behind you....



I never bother looking at all, as looking ain't gonna make it coming any faster..........

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Some stations like 14 st Union Sq ....when the train approaches the platform ...after a complete stop ......the movable platform makes closure with the body of the car .....in some sections the gap between the car and the platform are a little to big. As long as it's big enough for someone's feet to get stock in between, it's enough to be considered for repair. I hope they inspect those aspect as well.

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